The power of social media to engage real estate clients has never been stronger. For a hyper-local, highly visual industry like ours, it offers so many creative ways to reach our core audiences. And while personal relationships will always drive our success, social media is now a key piece of every real estate marketing tool kit.
According to a recent survey from The Close, social media was the second most effective way to win business in 2020. Encouraged by these outcomes, 82 percent of agents surveyed say they’re upping their social media game in 2021.
At Weichert, affiliates are always sharing social media strategies with their colleagues across the country. In this ever-changing landscape, keeping up can feel intimidating at times. But remember, this is an incredible opportunity to showcase your expertise and individuality.
Here are some tips for making your social media marketing more effective –– and making the journey more fun.
Strike a balance
Even when your social media platform is built for business, your audience is still human. So, naturally, they’ll enjoy a mix of informational, educational, and entertaining content. This blend will keep things fresh and nurture engagement.
Instead of posting only property specs, give your followers and fans a look behind the scenes. Combine the beauty of professional photos with, say, a real-world peek of you shining a front door, sweeping leaves off an entryway, or replacing dim bulbs. Sharing the less glamorous side of real estate, and the lengths you go to for your clients, shows the value that great agents bring to our business.
Your posts can even include a mix of original and curated content, meaning articles, videos, or other pieces from experts you know your audience will find interesting.
A lively, exciting social media presence can also boost recruitment. “Our social media campaigns attract agents who are looking for a forward-thinking brokerage,” says Michael McKenna, a Weichert affiliate in Columbia, Maryland. “One of our top producers actually joined us because their brokerage wasn’t using social media to promote agent’s listings and successes.”
For the best ROI, try posting when your audience will be most receptive. Below is a posting schedule recommended by Hootsuite, but feel free to tailor yours to your audience as you get to know their viewing habits.
Be super responsive
How many times have you come across a really impressive website, filled out an inquiry form, and heard nothing but crickets? We’ve all been there. It’s amazing how much time and money so many businesses pour into digital marketing then fail to respond when leads reach out.
The now-famous MIT study, covered by Harvard Business Review and countless publications, explored how query response times affect potential sales. Businesses that responded within an hour of receiving an inquiry were nearly seven times as likely to qualify the lead than those who made contact even an hour later.
A decade later, customers expect a nearly instant reply. According to Hubspot, nearly two-thirds of buyers expect a response within 10 minutes to their marketing, sales, or customer service inquiry.
It’s also important to respond to casual comments, discussions, and even “likes” on your posts. Say hello, thank them for visiting, ask questions, see how you can help. In short, stay plugged in and show people you care.
Share your perspective
Remember, you’re not on social media simply to repost listings people can find on your website. You’re an industry expert, perhaps with advanced training such as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist®. Clients will love hearing an honest “insider” take on issues that affect virtually everyone.
Beyond property details, you might share neighborhood statistics that can help home buyers better assess a potential investment. Putting data points such as median income, average home value, distance to downtown, school ratings, and tax info into an eye-catching infographic can help people see a particular community in a whole new light.
Your perspective also comes down to gut feelings and years of real estate experience. What makes this property unique? Why does it stand out among the hundreds you’ve seen? What can you share with clients that they probably can’t see on their own? These insights can set your social media apart.
Spice it up
Unlike your website and Linkedin profile, platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok allow for a rolling array of creative content. Make the most of it with stunning imagery, impromptu videos, behind-the-scenes sneak peeks, and anything else that engages your audience.
This TikTok from Lauren Biesemeyer, a Weichert agent in Oklahoma, gives a 30-second property tour and lets everyone know she “sold this gorgeous home in less than 24 hours!” That’s way more exciting than a simple SOLD sign.
Not surprisingly, video grabs attention like nothing else. According to Sprout Social, video is seen as the most valuable type of content for achieving social goals (ahead of images, text, stories, and even live video).
A 2021 survey by Wyzowl found that the number of businesses using video as a marketing tool has increased by 41 percent since 2016. The survey also found that:
- 87 percent of marketers feel that video provides a strong ROI84 percent of people have bought a product or service after watching a branded video69 percent of consumers prefer to be informed through video (compared to 18 percent who’d rather read an article)
If you need help taking your videos to the next level, Animoto and other services make it easier than ever with polished layouts, fonts, imagery, music, and more.
Measure, adjust, repeat
Analyzing data on your social media performance is key, so you’ll know where to focus future efforts. It’s easy to see which posts get the most engagement in terms of likes, retweets, and comments, but going deeper into the data can give you a more complete picture. Companies like Sprout Social and Hootsuite can help you make sense of your social media metrics so you can use dollars strategically.
“Over the years, our Facebook campaigns have yielded sales totaling more than $1.5 million in volume from buyer registrations on listing ads,” says Michael McKenna. “I suspect that our business would be down ten percent if our social media campaigns were halted.”
Michael and his team have recently added Instagram, LinkedIn, and Google business pages to their toolbox via Buffer, which measures performance, creates reports, and provides insights to help grow engagement.
At Weichert, we provide monthly social media content ideas like video tips and holiday ideas as well as branded images for consumer and recruiting posts. We also share sources for curated content. And while these resources can help round out a posting calendar, we stress the importance of keeping it real. Nothing beats content that is unique to each affiliate office and shows off their local connections.
This week, we’re all getting a refresher on hashtags. Feeling #overwhelmed, #confused, #behindtheeightball? Not to worry. Weichert has the tools your brokerage needs to succeed at real estate social media. And we’re always happy to chat!